The Fairer Scotland Action Plan is the first government response to last year’s Fairer Scotland conversation. The Action Plan is built on five high level ambitions that the government will focus on in the period to 2030:
- A fairer Scotland for all
- Ending child poverty
- A strong start for all young people
- Fairer working lives
- A thriving third age
It outlines 50 actions for this parliamentary term to help tackle poverty, reduce inequality and build a fairer and more inclusive Scotland. A few of these are: ‘We will …
- In 2017, introduce a new socio-economic duty on public bodies
- Part-fund three local Poverty and Truth Commissions getting the voices of people who have experienced poverty into the national debate. Building on their work, establish a national Poverty and Inequality Commission in 2017/18. Right at the heart of the commission will be the voices and experiences of people with experience of poverty.
- Launch a new £29 million programme, including £12.5 million from the European Social Fund, to tackle poverty in Scotland Over the next two years, the programme will enable communities and third sector organisations to design, test and deliver innovative approaches to combat poverty and improve people’s lives.
- Do more to help people to have a say in their local areas [mentioning the manifesto proposal to require 1% of local authority budgets to be devoted to Participatory Budgeting, the introduction of Participation Requests (they ‘expect this part of the Act to come into force before the end of 2016’), and the Empowering Communities Fund]
- In 2017, develop a new approach to social isolation and loneliness. … The Scottish Government and its partners have many programmes and funding streams which are in place to address social isolation and loneliness. But these all need to be coordinated better, and we will take action, informed by the best available evidence, via a new strategic approach
The government will hold a Citizen’s Forum in the second half of this parliament, inviting many of those who took part in the previous conversations to help identify new areas of focus. The Citizen’s Forum will help to set out new fairness actions for the next session of parliament.